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Lindenhurst man found guilty in forced prostitution case

A Suffolk judge found Lindenhurst resident Andrew Gayot

A Suffolk judge found Lindenhurst resident Andrew Gayot guilty of sex trafficking and prostitution charges Tuesday. He faces a maximum of 50 years in prison when he is sentenced July 27. Credit: SCPD

A Suffolk County judge Tuesday found a Lindenhurst man guilty of sex trafficking and prostitution charges involving victims prosecutors said he lured into working for him.

Andrew Gayot, 38, faces a maximum of 50 years in prison after his conviction on 34 of 50 counts in a Riverhead courtroom.

Gayot was convicted of the top charge — two counts of first-degree criminal sexual act involving a then-26 year-old woman, between May 26, 2013 and June 22, 2013; and one count of compelling prostitution involving a then-15-year-old girl, between November 2013 and February 2014.

Gayot, who chose to forgo a jury trial, was also convicted of four counts of sex trafficking, three counts of second-degree promoting prostitution and other offenses.

Judge Barbara Kahn announced the verdict after a roughly one-month bench trial that ended on Thursday. She set his sentencing for July 27.

The judge acquitted Gayot of two counts of second-degree kidnapping. Kahn also acquitted the Lindenhurst man of charges including one count of first-degree criminal sexual act and seven more counts of sex trafficking.

Prosecutors said Gayot lured the two victims as well as a then- 21-year-old woman — all drug addicts — into prostitution, working from his Lindenhurst home, between January 2013 and February 2014, when he was arrested.

In opening statements, prosecutors told Kahn that Gayot offered the victims love, affection, drugs and a place to live.

“He essentially used all different types of methods to get them to comply with his demands to prostitute for him,” said Stacy Skorupa, a senior assistant Suffolk County district attorney, after Tuesday’s hearing.

Skorupa said the verdict “should send a message to anyone out there looking to victimize somebody to think twice before they do it.”

On the opening day of the trial, the 21-year-old victim testified that she had just come out of a drug-treatment program in 2013 for heroin addiction when she met Gayot.

She said she fell in love with him and he got her to recruit another victim, offering a place to stay, clothing and drugs, said the woman, now 24.

When they didn’t follow his rules, Gayot became violent, beating the 21-year-old with an electrical cord and using a stun gun on her, prosecutors said.

After she didn’t regain consciousness, he tossed her under a cold shower, then threw her down the stairs. He kept all of the money the women earned, prosecutors said.

Suffolk police arrested Gayot in February 2014 at his house, where they found two women, including the 15-year-old, who authorities said was a runaway.

His attorney, Daniel Russo of Hauppauge, couldn’t be reached for comment.

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